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Doctor insights on: Lung Scar Tissue From Breast Cancer From Radiation Therapy

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I got a scar tissue in lung after radiation therapy for breast cancer. No one told me it could happen. What should I do?

I got a scar tissue in lung after radiation therapy for breast cancer. No one told me it could happen. What should I do?

Very rare, but...: ...Well-recognized complication of breast radiation therapy (of course, when you are that "one in a million", that doesn't help). Modern techniques are designed to maximize rx to the breast & minimize effects on the heart and lungs. Your radiation oncologist certainly should have discussed this with you pre-treatment--informed consent is a necessary part of any rx regimen. ...Read more

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Dr. Barry Rosen
1,337 doctors shared insights

Breast Cancer (Definition)

Breast cancer results when glandular cells lining the milk ducts and lobules of the human breast begin to grow in an unregulated manner. The growth occurs initially inside the ducts but eventually breaks outside into the breast tissue and ultimately spreads both to the lymph nodes in the armpit and via the bloodstream to other parts of the body. Because of the promoting affect of estrogen almost all breast cancer occurs in women and is a rarity in men. The unregulated growth is due to both inherited and acquired genetic defects. It is the most common malignancy in women but it often curable if found early and treated effectively with surgery, hormonal therapy, chemotherapy and targeted therapy, or a combination thereof. Early detection before the malignancy becomes large enough to be felt depends on mammography/sonography and MRI imaging of the breast ...Read more


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Can radiation therapy treat breast cancer that has come back in the lung?

Can radiation therapy treat breast cancer that has come back in the lung?

Usually not: Breast cancer that has come back in the lung usually requires chemotherapy. It depends on the type of breast cancer, how quickly it is growing, and whether there are multiple spots or just one spot. Breast cancer in the lung means microscopic cancer has spread through the body, so a whole-body treatment like chemo (or hormone-blocking therapy) is necessary for best results. ...Read more

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Could radiation treatments for breast cancer cause scar tissue in the lungs?

Could radiation treatments for breast cancer cause scar tissue in the lungs?

Yes: This was a more common occurrence before modern tangential fields that avoid the lung. However, if the lung receives significant radiation, then pulmonary fibrosis can develop. ...Read more

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1st stage breast cancer was removed in march, had radiation therapy(30day), now taking tamoxifen, but coughing phlegm now, can it be a transfer to lungs?

1st stage breast cancer was removed in march, had radiation therapy(30day), now taking tamoxifen, but coughing phlegm now, can it be a transfer to lungs?

Not likely: It is more likely to have bronchitis or pneumonia in the lungs especially following treatment (radiation) for early breast cancer if you develop a cough with phlegm. Check with your doctor who might have you get a chest x-ray. ...Read more

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Can I get radiation therapy for breast cancer if I have a port-a-cath in place?

Yes: The mediport is used for chemotherapy and the patient may also need radiation. It should have been placed on the opposite side to not interfere with radiation. If not it can always be moved or removed. ...Read more

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Do i need radiation therapy if I have early stage breast cancer with clear margins?

Do i need radiation therapy if I have early stage  breast cancer with clear margins?

Yes!: There is nothing that makes a surgeon more uncomfortable after a lumpectomy than hearing the question: "did you get it all?" cancer is very humbling and it's growth is not completely predictable. While our margins may be "clear", we know many women will return with cancer at this lumpectomy site within 2-3 years unless radiation therapy is given. With rare exception, radiation rx is necessary. ...Read more

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Is radiation therapy necessary when I have early stage of breast cancer with all clear margins?

Is radiation therapy necessary when I have early stage of breast cancer with all clear margins?

Yes!: There is nothing that makes a surgeon more uncomfortable after a lumpectomy than hearing the question: "did you get it all?" cancer is very humbling and it's growth is not completely predictable. While our margins may be "clear", we know many women will return with cancer at this lumpectomy site within 2-3 years unless radiation therapy is given. With rare exception, radiation rx is necessary. ...Read more

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Would you be able to drive yourself home after radiation therapy or chemotherapy for breast cancer?

Would you be able to drive yourself home after radiation therapy or chemotherapy for breast cancer?

ASK YOUR MD: The oncologist(cancer specialist) can answer your question more effectively, however radiation therapy usually allows a self-drive home. Chemotherapy, depending upon the "cocktail" used produces a lot of nausea/vomiting and generally not a good idea to self drive home. ...Read more

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Can elderly breast cancer patients still get radiation therapy?

Can elderly breast cancer patients still get radiation therapy?

Yes: Breast cancer is treated by stage but consideration is made to performance status not just age. So if the disease requires radiation even the elderly can usually tolerate the treatment. Stage 1 patients who have positive receptors may be able to omit the radiation if they are over 70 if they take hormone pills. ...Read more

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How effective has intraoperative radiation therapy been for u.S. Breast-cancer patients so far?

How effective has intraoperative radiation therapy been for u.S. Breast-cancer patients so far?

Early results good: Published results of intraoperative radiation therapy, iort, (targit-a trial) have found no difference as compared to traditional whole-breast radiation therapy in a subset of people at low risk for recurrence. While promising, we await long-term data before expanding this option to more people. To-date, my experience has been very favorable. ...Read more

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Dr. Barry Rosen
4,223 doctors shared insights

Cancer (Definition)

Cancer is a group of diseases that is characterized by uncontrolled cell growth leading to invasion of surrounding tissues that spread to other parts of the body. Cancer can begin anywhere in the body and is usually related to one or more genetic mutations that allow normal cells to become malignant by interfering with internal cellular control mechanisms, such as programmed cell death or by preventing ...Read more


Lung (Definition)

Deoxygenated blood enters the lungs from the right side of the heart and travels to the lungs. When you inspire, oxygen flows into the lungs, transverses the capilliares and attaches to hemoglobin down a gradient. At the same time, co2 diffuses into the capilaries and is expelled with exhalation. Oxygen rich blood then flows to the left side of the heart and into the ...Read more